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Cool, fruit-filled salsa a delicious option for a hot day

Recipe: White nectarines star in a fresh condiment -- or salad

Bowl of white and red salsa with blue chips on a yellow plate
This salsa features white nectarines but is equally good with yellow ones, or white or yellow peaches.
(Photos: Kathy Morrison)

It's a good thing there's so much fruit in season right now. The options to make something without turning on the oven or even the stovetop are much greater.

This salsa is one of my favorites for the hot summer months. The best stone fruit I've found to use it in is white nectarines, which are sweet but a little bland to me on their own. Put them together with some fresh peppers, herbs and red onion, however, and they brighten up considerably. (They also don't have to be peeled.) But use peaches (any color) or yellow nectarines if those are what look good to you at the market or store.

I like this salsa with blue chips, as shown in the photo, but it's spectacular as a condiment with barbecued chicken. Or pile it on some lettuce instead for a great salad.

Onion, cilantro, herbs, tomatoes and nectarines on a cutting board
Plenty of fresh summer produce in this salsa.
White Nectarine Salsa

Ingredients:

1/2 cup chopped fresh tomato (grape, cherry or regular size)

1/2 cup diced red onion or shallots

1 fresh  jalapeño or serrano pepper, seeded and diced small

1-1/2 tablespoon slivered fresh mint leaves

1-1/2 tablespoon slivered fresh basil leaves

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1 tablespoon fresh orange juice (or more lime juice)

2 firm-ripe nectarines, seeded and diced

Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Instructions:

In a medium bowl, stir together the diced tomato, onion, pepper, herbs and juices. Gently stir in the diced nectarine. Add some salt and pepper. Chill 1 hour to meld the flavors. Correct the seasonings before serving.

Note: This salsa tastes best the day it's made, but adding some more fresh lime juice can brighten up the leftovers.



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RECIPE

A recipe for preparing delicious meals from the bounty of the garden.

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Dig In: Garden checklist for week of Sept. 25

This week's warm break will revive summer crops such as peppers and tomatoes that may still be trying to produce fruit. Pumpkins and winter squash will add weight rapidly.

Be on the lookout for powdery mildew and other fungal diseases that may be enjoying this combination of warm air and moist soil.

* Late September is ideal for sowing a new lawn or re-seeding bare spots.

* Compost annuals and vegetable crops that have finished producing.

* Cultivate and add compost to the soil to replenish its nutrients for fall and winter vegetables and flowers.

* Plant for fall now. The warm soil will get cool-season veggies and flowers off to a fast start.

* Plant onions, lettuce, peas, radishes, turnips, beets, carrots, bok choy, spinach and potatoes directly into the vegetable beds.

* Transplant lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower.

* Sow seeds of California poppies, clarkia and African daisies.

* Transplant cool-weather annuals such as pansies, violas, fairy primroses, calendulas, stocks and snapdragons.

* Divide and replant bulbs, rhizomes and perennials.

* Dig up and divide daylilies as they complete their bloom cycle.

* Divide and transplant peonies that have become overcrowded. Replant with "eyes" about an inch below the soil surface.

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